I’ve been watching bachata dance videos for a long time now. I’m memorised by how unapologetically sexy and intimate it is. I didn’t have the confidence to learn it but I’ve become so obsessed with it that I really want to learn. Only problem is, I have no idea where to start 😅
Hey ! Always happy to see people getting passionated about dancing ! I’ve been dancing for a few years and also been teaching here and there.
My piece of advice would be to take classes. In the long run having strong fundamentals is THE most important thing. If you start learning by dancing (mostly for followers) it’s fine but be sure to works those fundamentals (the rules of the frame mostly). Also, dancing is supposed to be fun. So taking class will force you to meet people and dance with differents people with different styles/shape/size.
Then there’s a lot of things you can learn by yourself like footwork/waves/body dislocations…
As everyone said: classes. I started with salsa because a friend needed a dance partner and I always loved dancing. From there I went to a salsa festival after a while and found out that there are other styles of latin dances too!
After a year or two I started seriously taking bachata classes and bachata sensual classes with one of the best teachers in my country who really hammered home: basics, basics, basics. A man is more with mastering 5 good basics with good leads, than memorizing 25 choreos. A dancer is only as good as his lead, and a follower can only learn by following!
After that it was on to festivals and workshops, and putting myself on the dancefloor. I’m still not where I want to be, but I know what I can do and what I’m good at.
What you SHOULDN’T do to learn bachata is look at too many videos that are choreos and just try to copy those. Keep in mind those are made to look good, but aren’t necessarily practical if you want to use them on the dancefloor. So if you find classes somewhere and the teacher just goes “on one you do this, on two you do this, and on three, ladies you do this and guys you do this.”, start asking questions: “how do I lead that with someone who doesn’t follow this class? Why are my feet not in the basic step? What is the connection I need to keep with my partner?”
I went to a salsa/bachata class the first time, and learnt there.
I think it is the best thing to do. It might look scary and out of your comfort zone, but it’s worth it!
I would advise to find a dance school teaching bachata and taking classes with other beginners. In the first weeks/months, having a real teacher is extremely helpful compared to just learning from youtube.
If you have the opportunity, choose a dance school that also have social parties to practice. It really is the best. Otherwise you can still go out with friends from your dance group!
I suggest that you start by learning about bachata music, and what is good bachata musicality. I know it can be a bit boring in the beginning but you will be able to make sense of a lot of the moves much quicker once you know how they relate to the music. For example, in bachata the 1 is the strong beat and the 4 is the softer beat. The basic step is strong on the 1 and finished on the 4 with a tap.
Practice solo work with good musicality, so when you go into partnerwork you will ensure that you can lead yourself first. Leading another person is extremely difficult if you don’t know what you are doing or are not aware of the music.
In partnerwork when you memorise a couple of moves find a partner to practice and practice the moves with your eyes closed (DON’T DO THIS IN A SOCIAL DANCE). This is just for practice.
In a social just have fun, here is where you learn how to communicate with another person first.
I started to take classes, and then go to festivals.
Actually I am advanced and learn from the Internet. If I see a nice move, try to understand and practice to get better.
As long as you like the dance and have desire to learn, you can do it.
I suggest you to look on youtube for artists like Ataca and Alemana, Luis and Andrea, Daniel and Desiree and so on. See which style you like.